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Supply chain backlog impacts small business in WNY

Experts expect backlog to end in 2022
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Posted at 5:39 PM, Sep 08, 2021

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — A supply chain backlog across the world has caught up to a small business in Western New York.

“It’s kind of cascading throughout the supply chain, especially now that COVID’S picking up,” UB School of Management assistant Professor Richard Kraude said.

Lake Effect Artisan Ice Cream said its suspending sales of its pints to all retail outlets. Lake effect said it’s become difficult to procure ingredients in a timely fashion from key suppliers. Kraude said supply chains have many moving parts.

“There’s a lot of interdependencies that go throughout there,” Kraude said. “So, if you have a bottle neck and you go along the supply chain, then you’re going to have delays.”

In a statement, Lake Effect said it is important it continues to make and sell its ice-cream at a fair price.

“If costs are increasing, it is going to be directly passed on to customers, so prices are increasing too,” Kraude said. “And then you also have a labor shortage too, so that’s compounding the issue too.”

UB School of Management assistant professor Mike Wei said for supply chains to avoid future disruptions, they need to become more resilient.

“By building up your inventory capacity and also reduce reliance on the outsourcing,” Wei said.

Professor Wei and Kraude agree that supply chain issues should subside by 2022, but it still largely depends on other countries.

“There’s a lot of uncertainty with what different countries are doing and how they’re reacting to COVID,” Kraude said.

“It’s going to be a bumpy road but you’re not going to see some of the shortages we experienced last year,” Wei said.